One-shot wonder Pastor begs sabotage

AUSTIN, Texas - Pastor Maldonado failed to pass Q1 ahead of the 2013 US F1 GP so he's allegedly accused the team of sabotaging his car.

Austin is the first race since it was announced officially that Venezuelan Maldonado - and his millions in PDVSA backing - would head elsewhere for 2014.

He even began the weekend with an aggressive tone, saying it was his decision to quit Williams because he delivered "more to the team than they (did) for me". Then on Saturday the 28-year-old then qualified 18th while his team mate Valtteri Bottas - he's staying with the team - made it all the way to the top 10


"Now the announcement has been made and suddenly things are worse for me," he told Spanish-language journalists after qualifying.

And he told English-language reporters: "I think in my car somebody is playing with the pressure and the temperatures."

Maldonado said it was "great" that, after Sunday, only one more race in his three-year Williams career remained.


Deputy team boss Claire Williams blamed Maldonado's comments on the "adrenalin" of qualifying.
"People say things after such situations," she said. "We will go back and talk to the engineers to find out what happened but never would Williams' do anything like that."

But later, when Maldonado spoke to the print media, his mind was still on sabotage. "I have never felt anything like that from a car," he was quoted as telling Germany's Auto Motor und Sport. Did he think Williams sabotaged his car? "Maybe, maybe not, but I know very well how our car is. Frankly I don't care, I will focus on next season.  It's over."

Claire Williams later commented: "Within the team, behind closed doors, it's not acrimonious. I don't see any sort of issue. Pastor said he wanted to go to another team and that's absolutely fine - it's the nature of the business."

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